This St Ives five bedroomed property is owned by Camellia clients who are based in Singapore. Knowing the team’s specialism in coastal architecture, design and interiors, they approached Camellia for their management across the whole rebuild and refurb of the house – citing the uniqueness of the area and the diverse colour palette as their main inspiration.
The main requirement architecturally was to create a relaxing yet practical environment for holidays. However, the owners were also looking for a flexible internal accommodation option that would prove attractive as an exclusive holiday let.
Design Director of Camellia Interiors, Elaine Skinner, says, “This St Ives property was a major challenge structurally and logistically, although this is just the type of test that the Camellia team rises to brilliantly. Alongside our Cornish builders, we obviously know the logistics of St Ives intimately so our project management team successfully planned to overcome the parking and access restraints of narrow streets. The interiors style had to be fun yet formal – embracing the integrity of the property’s character and proportions, without compromising contemporary living requirements.”
The unexpected discovery of a basement and consequent review of structural work and budget was quickly capitalised on by Camellias’ design team. This extra floor now houses an eye-catching media room and office with cinema-like lighting. This was installed in the staircase leading down and a contemporary feel was created with a large bespoke sofa and neutral-coloured, geometric wallpaper – showcasing the innovative smart lighting. Controlled using a smart phone device, this system can produce an instant atmospheric change, with the memories of builders digging out the basement and carrying it off site by hand in bags, long forgotten.
With the clients working and living in a different time zone, all work was scheduled in advance and progress communicated with the clients via email, Skype and conference calls.
On the front terrace, lime stone was used in a grey textured finish to complement the Cornish outdoor life style. In the rear yard handy wet suit drying-racks hang ready for use, whilst on the opposite side of the property a large dining table with integral fire-pit now offers a perfect view of the town’s harbour and surrounding coastline.
From an interiors perspective the client was fully appreciative of the town’s charms and therefore briefed the Camellia team to imbue their new home with flourishes of the artistic heritage, the fishing legacy and the mild sub-tropical climate. As a result, Camellia utilised the ‘iconic St Ives view’ juxtaposing it with modern art and key colours from the outlook. The Wow factor was added with black, acid yellow and white, accents of which are repeated throughout the house on artwork, an intentional mix of furniture, and luxurious furnishings – all supplied by Camellia with handpicked accessories from their own range. The fusion of classic, eclectic and luxury coastal elements within a Victorian structure now reflects the evolution of the property from its fishing village roots to a contemporary holiday getaway.
The project has been shortlisted in three separate categories of a prestigious International Design competition and Elaine Skinner says, “As the only Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and one of the only British Institute of Interior Design qualified and accredited practices in Cornwall, we are continually driven by the need to create and deliver exacting industry standards. Entering awards is an exciting way to raise the profile of these standards whilst inspiring us to continually strive for excellence. Within Camellia, we know our design work is a success with our clients, and these awards firmly reinforce that. It’s great to see that our work on this particular St Ives property has been shortlisted in so many categories of these prestigious awards.”
Sarah Hemsley of leading lettings agency Cornish Gems says, “St Ives is always in demand with our extensive database of clients and the Camellia work on this property makes it one of our major showcase properties. The introduction of the practical flexibility of the space mixed with the luxurious, yet comfortable feel makes this an ideal holiday home. What we really love is how the Camellia team has combined Cornish storytelling via artwork and interior touches. Our bookings are well ahead of our initial expectations and it’s always great to work with an architectural and interior design practice who are so cohesively in tune with the needs of both the owner and the holiday guests.”
This project was completed on time for this very happy clients’ family to come together and enjoy this years summer holiday.